Anavra of Magnesia, as a bright example in the crisis

On a rainy day that passes our homeland, Anavra and whatever has been done here, is a bright example, but unfortunately one of the few in Greece.  Many things have contributed to this: the media, Greek and foreign, who has increased the exposure with reports and tributes in press reports and broadcasts on television, as well as the visitors, individual or in groups (schools, clubs etc.) who come to see live what they hear and read.  The numerous invitations received by the initiator of this project Dimitris Ch. Tsoukalas, former President of Magnesia’s’  Community of Anavra (1991-1994, 1999-2010) and now President of ANAVRA-ZO, to speak and present this phenomenon of local development in various fora, workshops, conferences, seminars etc. are also a beneficial factor. 

The most recent one was in Metsovo on 10.26.2012, where he spoke at a conference organized by the Association of Greek Chemists, Annex of Epirus, together with the Municipality of Metsovo and the University of Ioannina in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the liberation of Metsovo.
On this occasion we remind you that Anavra’s case was presented in the following events:

  • Athens, 07.06.2012 , Ecologist Greens
  • Mouzaki of Karditsa, 06.30.2012, “Enomeni Romiosini”
  • Larisa, 06.10.2012, NGO of Thessaly
  • Larisa, 03.09.2012, TEI of Larisa
  • Patra ,09.30.2011, Western Administrative District of Greece
  • Melabes of Crete, 09.11.2011, Local Community of Melabes
  • Olympos of Karpathos, 09.10.2011, Association "Woman of Karpathos"
  • Athens, 05.28.2011, Harokopio University , Postgraduate Program
  • Kozani, 03.30.2011, Independent Self-government Movement “ Municipality of Kozani : Place to live”
  • Athens ropes, 03.27.2011, National Park “Schinias” of Marathon
  • Athens, 02.04.2011, TEE / EKEM
  • Thessaloniki, 01.31.2011, Bar Association of Thessaloniki- Movement of Active Citizens of Stagira - Acanthus
  • Athens, 12.02.2010, Greek Company Business Administration
  • Athens, 10.04.2010, TEDx Academy
  • Tzoumerka , 08.07.2010, Tzoumerka’s Confederation
  • Konitsa, 12.12.2009, Konitsas’ Center for Environmental Education ( CEE )
  • Kastoria , 12.11.2009, CCI Kastoria
  • Kalamaria Thessaloniki 11.20.2009, Kalamarias’ Municipality
  • Athens, 11.10.2009, Greek- American Chamber
  • Lassithi Plateau, 08.06.2009, Cretans’ Student Union
  • Chios Amani, 08.02.2009, Citizens\' Movement
  • Athens, 05.21.2009, Harokopio University , Postgraduate Program
  • Paranesti of Drama, 05.15.2009, CCI Paranestiou
  • Athens, 05.14.2007, Harokopio University , Postgraduate Program

The number of invitations received by the President of ANAVRA-ZO for speeches is impressive. He responds to as many as he can because he thinks it is his duty and responsibility to make known the example of Anavra, so that all shall understand nothing is impossible; everything can be done as long as we want it and seek it in the right way.





Yet another award for the work of Anavra

On Tuesday, June 5, 2012, a day dedicated to the environment, Anavra Magnesia was honored once again to the persons of DIMITRIS CHR. TSOUKALAS, President of ANAVRA-ZO, former President of the Community of Anavra and initiator of all the work that has been done here, and his wife MACHI KARALI, Technical Director of the Community without fee all these years.

He was awarded with the "LIFETIME WORK 2012" award given in OIKOPOLIS Awards for Environmental Sensitivity of the Voluntary Organisation for the Urban Environment ECOCITY (

The awards OIKOPOLIS Environmental Sensitivity ( is an institution that was established in 2005 by the Voluntary Organisation for the Urban Environment ECOCITY. The aim of the awards is to recognize and reward the environmental sensitivity and the contribution of Scientists, Institutions, Local Authorities, Business and Media. The institution was enriched in 2006 with the award for lifetime work and the first person awarded was Niki Goulandri.

The ceremony took place at the House of Literature and Arts of the Onassis Foundation, a contemporary bioclimatic building in a great hall, one of the best available in Athens. The event was well organized, in a place with distinctive decoration. It was creatively directed, well presented and accompanied with songs by the choir of New Smyrne High School Lycée. It is worth noting that all the work has been coordinated by volunteers. Even the prize, which was a small sculpture made from recycled aluminium, work by a laboratory group of Technological Institute of West Macedonia.

Receiving the award, Ms. Machi Karalis said she believed the prize was not awarded "to the woman who is always behind a great man" (!) but to the person who has been a key partner in this effort without material reward and without having origin from this village. And even more to the scientist and teacher who believes that knowledge and experience has to be returned back and shared with the community, without ulterior motive and reward. She said: "The journey was not easy, it had many problems, obstacles and difficulties. What prompted us, however, to this project was the strong desire to offer where there was need. The message from this story is to offer wherever and in every way you can to your neighbour, your fellow citizens,-something that we need so much especially now in this very difficult time for Greece."

Mr. D. Ch. Tsoukalas, when replying, he said he feels great pleasure because he is honoured by volunteers with an award that has reference to the environment, but also because his wife and collaborator over the years is being honoured too. He stressed that: "We went in Anavra and worked as volunteers through a public operator. We were carrying as supplies as volunteers, our sensitivity to the environment, vision, interest and appetite for work, love and passion. We went to give and not to take back and we were placing the public interest above our personal benefit."

Then said the Anavra became known for two main reasons, the big growth (amongst the first places in Greece) but also for environmentally friendly projects (Wind Farm, Environmental Cultural Park, and two, small hydro-power and district heating in progress). Finally, after referring briefly to the work that has been done in Anavra, he concludes his brief speech with the following:

"It's true that I am glad that my village took this publicity thanks to the work that has been done there, but I feel disappointed that there are no other examples like Anavra although they should and could. Because Anavra, except from a place of prosperity in Greece is also an example that when you want you can achieve what we everybody sometimes considers impossible and impractical. You just need to have, apart from skills, vision, interest, desire, faith and love for what you do. And yet:

Be honest and hard-working

Do not aim at your personal benefit and in your personal advancement. Do not be concerned about the political cost.

Do not serve any party space but working for the welfare and benefit of all your fellow citizens and country

I am optimistic that Anavra leads the way. If Anavra was able to regenerate, the same can happen for Greece, as long as those who will elect in a few days have the will to solve the problem and are determinate to put the interests of our country above their personal and partisan interests."





ANAVRA-ZO celebrates the World Environmental Day by cleaning campaign in Anavra

There was great success of the initiative ANAVRA-ZO to organize cleaning campaign in public areas of the village and the Environmental and Cultural Park of Anavra springs, on the occasion of World Environment Day. The event took place on February 6th, 2011. Kindergarten and Elementary School of Anavra, Local Community, the Church Council of Anavra, the Association of Women of Anavra and many villagers participated in the event.

The whole campaign was coordinated by President of ANAVRA-ZO and former President of the Community Anavra Dim. Chr. Tsoukalas. All participants gathered at 9.00 am at the village square. Brief speeches were made by the Director of Elementary School George Kitsios and Machi Karali, a member of ANAVRA-ZO and in sequence plastic gloves and garbage bags were shared in all participants. The formed groups were scattered in various places of the village and the Park and, engaged with zeal, start collecting garbage. The collection was impressive and fully vindicated the initiative of the event, especially in this time where the cleaning of the village and the park is inadequate.

At the end of the operation all the participants gathered again in Central Square, where they enjoyed treats offered by Stathoula Tsantouri in the store. Other sponsors of the event were Theodore Tsiatsianis, pharmacist of Anavra, and Spyros Makriyannis, owner of the grocery store of Anavra.



New technologies in Agriculture and Stockbreeding

On January 22, 2012 Prof. George DAOUTOPOULOS from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Faculty of Agriculture, was the main speaker in a seminar organized by ANAVRA-ZO in the Multipurpose Hall of Anavra ‘Athanasios Milionis’. The theme was "New Technologies in Organic Agriculture and Livestock."

The seminar was attended by many fellow villagers and our farmers, especially young ones, as well as visitors from the area, which have been informed on the event though our website. Prof. Daoutopoulos spoke with clarity and simplicity about three new technologies that can be used in farming, namely: Energetic Microorganisms, zeolite and mycorrhiza. According to Prof. Daoutopoulos all these new technologies can be applied easily, have low cost, can improve living conditions of the animals and can raise not only production but also the quality of the products.

Prof. Daoutopoulos received many questions and at the end of his lecture provided additional information and urged farmers to try these technologies in part of their farm in order to have comparative results.

Board members of ANAVRA-ZO who attended the seminar asked Prof. Daoutopoulos to visit the village once more in spring in order to supervise those who will apply the technologies and organize more experimental applications of the technologies he presented.

Information regarding the issues presented can be found in:

GEORGE DAOUTOPOULOS Professor AUTH This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


ANAVRA-ZO and the Folklore Museum

One of the highlights of our village which is visited by many friends who arrive in here to see with their own eyes the work has been done in Anavra is the Folklore Museum Livestock Life. It is very important to preserve the culture and history of our village.

Unfortunately, after integration in the Municipality of Almyros but also before, when Anavra operated as autonomous community, it was possible to have an official responsible for the operation. The project was undertaken, then and now, by Emeritus Professor of NTUA Machi Karali, a member of ANAVRA-ZO and unpaid consultant of the local community on technical and cultural issues (Decision 2/2011). This voluntary offer is to gather and electronic register objects, the configuration of the space, the exhibition of objects, designing required equipment, cleaning (!) of the building, and supervising the days and hours of operation.